Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Extended assistance for cane growers

Larry Anthony, Minister for Community Services today said that Centrelink will continue to make fortnightly payments to struggling cane growers through the Government’s $83 million Sugar Industry Assistance Package.

“The Government has extended the Package until 31 December 2001. This will significantly help 4,100 cane growers who are receiving income support payments from Centrelink.

“This time extension means that those in need will be assisted until they have received a major proportion of their 2001 crop payments.

“Centrelink will also continue to deliver help to cane growers through interest rate relief for replanting, interest rate subsidies for general financial relief and financial counselling.

“Centrelink will contact cane growers receiving payments over the next two months to assess their continuing eligibility.

“Cane growers should contact Centrelink if their circumstances have changed on 1800 050 585.

“This extension reflects the Government’s strong commitment to a sustainable and competitive sugar industry,” Mr Anthony said.